Diary… Staying alive means staying away from others


Self-isolation is now a national pastime


Friday 20 March, London

📌 I still can’t stop my wife from going outdoors, despite advice saying stay inside. I can’t decide whether she genuinely wants to make the most of what might be the last days of freedom, whatever that now is, or whether she can’t stand the sight and sound of me.

📌 I’m amazed at Headway’s response to the crisis. They have completely transformed the way they work and how they deliver services to members. I am doing a video at home and Laura is keen for me to develop a cheesy QVC-style sales video for studio output and merchandise. I’m looking forward to trying that because at least I can create a character to crawl into whenever I’m forced to look at the camera. At the moment it all seems fun, but how long that will last is hard to tell.

And Michelle is sending out a daily Creative Challenge. Other members of staff do home visits with food parcels and there seems to be a great attitude to working through the crisis. Magic new ideas are coming thick and fast, but it is the spirit I find infectious and inspiring. They are also very good at using social media and that is something that counts for a lot in these trying times. Seeing Brad at home with his model car collection is cheering.


Brad at home with Zuber…

📌 We got a Messenger message from Jake saying Waitrose had full shelves of toilet rolls. He offered to get shopping for us if we needed it. He had been planning a big trip to the US, but I guess that’s been shelved.

📌 My temperature is 36.73. My wife tells me that is OK.

📌 We are still not watching much news. The temptation is to stay glued to the latest reports, but there is so much conflicting information that you’d go mad. My wife had a telephone appointment with one of her consultants this morning, and even they are exasperated. One “expert” will say that anyone with an “underlying condition” should self-isolate for 12 weeks. 

But nobody can tell you if your underlying condition is actually an “underlying condition”. Is my hereditary kidney disorder an “underlying condition”? I’d say so, but ask a nephrologist and they might say “Your condition does not make you susceptible to Covid-19”. 

That’s if you can get to speak with a nephrologist, or even know what a nephrologist is. So, when getting any useful health information is impossible, the default of 12 weeks self-isolation is applied. Soon, everyone in the whole world will be on a supposed 12-week self-isolation.

But of course they won’t be. They will continue to make up the rules for themselves until the authorities issue compulsory self-isolation orders, as they did already in China. Keep calm and carry on, if it continues, could become the most dangerous game in town.

📌 Not paying any attention to the news bulletins means your information trickles through any available crack. My cousin Kate posted a message on WhatsApp saying Nicola Sturgeon had nationalised everything in Scotland. I’m fascinated by this news, but I don’t really want to verify it in case it isn’t entirely true. I prefer the idea that she has indeed got a grip of the situation and is acting in the best interest of all of her nation’s citizens.

📌 I might have to revise the no-news diktat. Just heard that a mass closure of pubs, cafés and leisure centres is underway. Anywhere, in fact, where there are ‘other people’. Isn’t that the dictionary definition of Hell? 

📌 Just managed to get some chips from the chippy before it shut for the foreseeable.

Seems the government has agreed to pay 80% of all affected wages.

Seems also that this crisis could effect a political change no politicians ever could.

📌 ‘World of Interiors’ today features the inside of the jigsaw box we’ve just started.


A fully formed Paris is in there…

Pop Quiz… Name that Tune…
And the operator says, ‘forty cents more for the next three minutes’”

TITLE …………………………..

ARTIST …………………………

📝 Read yesterday’s diary.

🎧 Pop Quiz answer here.

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